As a landlord, you want your tenants to be as happy as possible with their accommodations. Unfortunately, summer can bring a lot of problems, including pests. Pests, like ants, rodents, and bees, can be more than just annoying — they can cause property damage and even be a threat to your tenants’ health. In fact, rodents consume or contaminate up to 20% of the global food supply. This is why it’s so important to do what you can to ensure your properties stay pest-free. The last thing you want to do is read a local rent report like one of these from ABODO, and then find out that you are going to be getting LESS than the market rate for your rental. So today, we’re going to start with something basic and talk about a few ways you can keep bugs out of your tenants’ kitchens.
Take Care of Cracks and Leaks
One of the first things you should do to prevent bugs from getting inside a house is to seal any cracks and crevices that they could sneak in through. So if there are any obvious places that bugs could be getting in, it’s important to do some remodeling. While it’s true that about one-third of homeowners adopt healthier habits after remodeling their kitchen, a little remodeling can also help prevent pests. Additionally, it’s important to seal not-so-obvious places — around the stove and next to the dishwasher are common places for bugs to creep in. And lastly, it’s essential to prevent moisture buildup. Pests, especially ones like cockroaches, seek out wet places to nest. So if there are any leaking pipes or clogged drains that are causing water buildup, those problems need to be taken care of sooner rather than later.
Focus on the Exterior
Obviously bugs make their way into a home from the outside — so it makes sense that pest prevention would start outside. First, it’s important to make sure any trees or bushes near the house are trimmed back. This is especially important for any windows right near a kitchen sink or counter because that’s going to be a popular choice for infestation. Bugs can make their way onto tree branches and then into the house from there, so make sure you’re keeping up with the landscaping. And secondly, you should consider spraying the outside of the property with a safe insecticide. Ideally, this could be done when you don’t have any tenants but it can be a big help regarding pest prevention. You should spray around the entire exterior near the ground as well as near windows, doors, and vents. This will create a nice barrier and hopefully, help prevent critters from making their way into the house.
Try Natural Approaches
If you’re hesitant to use harsh chemicals to prevent bugs from getting into the kitchen, especially around food items, there are some natural approaches to try. You can make a little fly trap by putting apple cider vinegar and a few drops of dish soap into a glass jar and putting on a lid with holes — the flies will be attracted to the vinegar and will end up trapped in the jar. You can also try putting some lavender or mint oil around the edges of windows or counters. Fleas, spiders, flies, and other insects don’t like these smells and they can work as a natural deterrent. And considering that fleas can lay up to 2,000 eggs in their lifetime, the sooner you come up with some kind of solution, the better. Your tenants with pets will likely thank you, as well! So instead of using the traps designed to catch some of the 10,000 species of ants, these scents can simply keep them, and other bugs, out in the first place. Even something like keeping basil plants in the kitchen can help deter bugs from finding their way into the kitchen.
Having bugs in the kitchen is something nobody wants to deal with. So keep these tips in mind to keep your tenants happy and bug-free all summer long.